Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Foxes plan to snare Sharp striker

Leicester City are set for a dramatic January swoop for Doncaster Rovers forward Billy Sharp, according to the Leicester Mercury.

The Foxes, languishing in mid-table mediocrity in a season where it was hoped that big spending could offer promotion to the Premier League, are short of goals despite high-profile strikers in the name of Jermaine Beckford and David Nugent leading the line. Jermaine Beckford has struggled to find Championship form since his £2.5 million summer move from Everton, netting just twice for the Foxes, and it is thought that 25-year-old Sharp could offer goals to help Leicester jump into the play-off places in the second half of the season.

The Foxes will have to pay big money to remove Sharp from the Keepmoat Stadium, however. The striker has played-out nearly his entire career around Yorkshire, with only a loan spell at Rushden and Diamonds six years ago breaking that record. It is believed that Nigel Pearson's Leicester will bid an initial £3 million for Sharp, in-line with a minimum clause in the player's contract.

Pearson is keen to see chances taken and blamed his players for not taking scoring opportunities more seriously in the wake of the Boxing Day draw to Ipswich Town. To that end, the Foxes have once again linked with Bristol City's Nicky Maynard who is thought to want out of Ashton Gate after the Robins' dire year. Bristol sit above Nottingham Forest and the relegation zone on goal difference alone.

Sharp rejected moves to league leaders Southampton and Ipswich in the summer and Doncaster chairman John Ryan wants the striker to remain with the club. He has contributed nine goals to Rovers' campaign and would be a key asset to their ambitions to remain in the Championship.

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